Kanye West has donated thousands of dollars in support of the family of Jemel Roberson, a black security guard who was shot and killed by police earlier this month while subduing a suspected gunman at the Illinois bar where he worked.
In the wake of Roberson’s death, his family launched a GoFundMe campaign to help cover funeral expenses, attracting thousands in donations — including $150,000 in contributions from West. The controversial rapper made 10 donations of $15,000, GoFundMe confirmed to the New York Daily News. The campaign has raised upwards of $300,000 overall as of Monday, more than twice the family’s original fundraising goal.
West has not commented publicly on his contribution, but in an update posted on the campaign page, Roberson’s family thanked the public for their “overwhelming” outpouring of support.
“The original goal to cover the funeral cost has been greatly surpassed, which will help his grieving family. Thank you again for your generosity!” the update reads.
Roberson was killed on Nov. 11 during an altercation at Manny's Blue Room, a bar in Robbins, Illinois where the 26-year-old father worked as a security guard. Earlier that night, Roberson had asked a group of drunken men to leave the premises; when one returned with a gun and allegedly opened fire, Roberson subdued him, only to be shot and killed by a police officer responding to the initial 911 call.
Roberson was wearing a hat that read “security” on it when he was fatally shot, his family has claimed.
Police have said Roberson wasn't wearing any clothing that identified him as a security guard and was given multiple verbal commands to drop his gun before being shot by a Midlothian police officer.
The Cook County Sheriff’s Office is handling the investigation of the initial shooting inside of the bar, while the state police’s Public Integrity Task Force is investigating the officer-involved shooting that left Roberson dead, according to USA Today. The officer’s identity has yet to be shared with the public, despite the requests of the victim’s family and community, according to the outlet.
The unnamed officer responsible for Roberson’s death has been placed on paid leave.
Roberson’s family filed a federal lawsuit last week against the officer and the village of Midlothian, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
[Photo: Getty Images]
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